Oakmont ~ Congressional ~ Firestone South-Royal Troon
That’s no joke.
Two majors, one WGC and four major courses.
Two majors are in the books and we’ve seen two, first-time winners in Danny Willett at Augusta and Dustin Johnson at Oakmont.
In my preview linked below you’ll see a trend that shouldn’t be too surprising when it comes to links golf and it’s hardly a surprise: premium experience or premium talent has ruled the roost on the shores of the United Kingdom.
Royal Troon returns to the rota after a 12-year absence and Americans, especially veterans, have done the business here the last six times.
Gamers setting lineups will need to remember that everyone tees off at No. 1 and that there is no two-tee start. Everyone plays the course No. 1 through No. 18 and I absolutely love that.
The weather will always be a factor on seaside links golf and this week will be no different. Gamers should remember that it can change quickly and violently and sometimes there’s nothing you can do about your lineup to save it.
You’ll need some luck, experience and pedigree to become Champion Golfer of 2016 and so will our fantasy teams.
2015-16 Winners (at time of victory)
In 2014-15 there were 14 players in their 20s who won tournaments. They accounted for a whopping 24 victories in 47 events.
Under 30 Winners (10 different winners from 13 events)
- Emiliano Grillo, 23; Frys.com
- Smylie Kaufman, 23; Shriners
- Justin Thomas, 22; CIMB
- Peter Malnati, 28; SFC
- Jordan Spieth, 22; HTOC, DEAN & DELUCA at Colonial
- Hideki Matsuyama, 23; WMPO
- Jason Day, 28; API & WGC-Dell Match Play, THE PLAYERS
- Danny Willett, 28; Masters
- Branden Grace, 27; RBC Heritage
- Daniel Berger, 23; FESJC
The guys between 30-39 years of age produced 16 multiple champions in 17 events last season.
Winners 30-39 (18 players in 19 events)
- Russell Knox, 30; HSBC Champions
- Graeme McDowell, 36; OHL Mayakoba
- Kevin Kisner, 31; RSM Classic
- Fabian Gomez, 37; Sony Open
- Jason Dufner, 38; CB Challenge
- Brandt Snedeker, 35; Farmers Insurance Open
- Vaughn Taylor, 39; AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am
- Bubba Watson, 37; Northern Trust Open
- Adam Scott, 35; Honda Classic, WGC-Cadillac Championship
- Charl Schwartzel, 31; Valspar
- Jim Herman, 38; Shell Houston Open
- Charley Hoffman, 39; Valero Texas Open
- Brian Stuard, 33; Zurich Classic
- James Hahn, 34; Wells Fargo Championship
- Sergio Garcia, 36; AT&T Byron Nelson
- William McGirt, 36; Memorial
- Dustin Johnson, 31; U.S. Open
- Billy Hurley, III, 34; Quicken Loans National
There were only four winners last season from 47 events (Furyk, Cejka, Love III and Harrington). Sentimentality and name recognition has no place in fantasy golf, folks.
- Greg Chalmers, 42; Barracuda Championship
Finally. Not Furyk. Not Phil. Not Stenson. Not Stricker. Chalmers, Greg Chalmers.
Last year the only rookie to pick up a first-place check was Canadian Nick Taylor. This season it took ONE EVENT to match that total.
- Emiliano Grillo; Frys.com
- Smylie Kaufman; Shriners
After winners in the first two events of the season, it’s been 31 straight without one of the newbies collecting a trophy.
Rookies, journeyman, up-and-comers, I’ll keep track of them all. It’s a life-changer.
McGirt/Berger makes it back-to-back weeks for the virgins!
First-Time Winners on Tour
- 2013: 12
- 2014: 10
- 2015: 11
- 2016: (15 and counting)
- Emiliano Grillo (Frys.com)
- Smylie Kaufman (Shriners)
- Justin Thomas (CIMB)
- Peter Malnati (SFC)
- Russell Knox (WGC-HSBC Champions)
- Kevin Kisner (RSM)
- Tony Finau (PRO)
- Jim Herman (SHO)
- Danny Willett (Masters)
- Branden Grace (RBC Heritage)
- Brian Stuard (Zurich Classic)
- William McGirt (Memorial)
- Daniel Berger (FESJC)
- Billy Hurley, III (QLN)
- Greg Chalmers (Barracuda) in his 386th event!
The beat rolls on as first-time winners have heated up just like the weather!
Good luck chops!